I have been teaching for 37 years.  It started by teaching children to swim when I was a teenage lifeguard, and I have taught hundreds more swimming throughout the years.  

I was not always a great swimmer however.  My father was a big tease, and thought it was exceptionally funny to pull us under the water when we were learning, so as one might imagine, I was extremely scared in the water a lot of the time.  

However, I used this understanding as I grew older and helped other young people overcome their fear of water.  I fully comprehended how frightening the environment of water could feel, and how important it was to instill trust to those who were learning.  

We all have experiences where we have overcome something, only later to help others deal with similar challenges.  To take our life experiences, and thereby use this knowledge to enhance the lives of others.

This is actually why we are here!  As the spiritual teacher Ram Dass once said, “We’re all just walking each other home.”

Of course, since this, I have taught everything from baking, poetry, theater, essay writing, literary analysis, speech and debate, meditation, volleyball, mediumship, psychic development, and even how to deal with a breakup.  I jokingly tell students, “If I know how to do it, I can teach it!”  

We all have life experiences we can use to help others.  For the truest joy we can achieve in life is through the help and support of one another.  Mankind is finally beginning to awaken to the idea of “We are all one, and what I do to you, later effects me.”  (Alas, there are still many who blindly continue to leave a wake of destruction behind themselves, but many more are learning this and waking up.)

Dec. 1st is Giving Tuesday, and we all have something we can give!  Some of us may be at a place in our lives where we can give money or our time to organizations that are near and dear to our hearts like Comfort Zone Camp or the Humane Society, but for those of us where money is tighter, we can still find ways to be there for others.  To use our life experiences to help those who may need it at this time, or even just to call a friend and remind them they are not alone.  

Remember, even if you have nothing monetary to give to your favorite cause, you still have yourself.  Use this Giving Tuesday to help another, even in the simplest or most seemingly small ways; these things add up.    For when we have nothing else to give, we should give ourselves.